The time has come for Short-Stack to be moved from the crib to a bed. She had five months in her cradle before she outgrew it, and now, she's broken the crib with excessive shaking. She's usually really good about her cotbed (except for the waking in the night as I grumbled about previously) but it's six years old and spent a year in storage. While in storage the wood's gone through a few expands/contracts and now the wooden dowels that hold it together have shrunk and the front facing side gate has been pushed off. Now, of course we could just wood glue it all together, but I'm a firm believer in signs and this is just a sign that she's ready for a bed. We converted the cot to a bed last night and she spent her first night with a bit of freedom.
I expected her to be a bit excited, and I wasn't wrong. We spent a half an hour of quiet play in her room, and tidied up the toys and random laundry off the floor (Sassy's very bad habit is to take her clothed off, swing them around and fling them. I hate it!) and then a couple of bedtime themed stories before laying her down and pulling the blankets up with a kiss goodnight.
I started with the "Rapid Return" technique (Which I learned about while watching Dr. Tanya Byron's "House of Tiny Tearaways" but cannot find a link to share; but basicly, you return them rapidly to bed, pull up the blankets and leave them right away - no talking, eye-contact or extra attention of any kind) which I soon realized was a great game for Short-Stack, because as soon as she'd see me across the hall she'd run back to her bed and giggle. I did this about 60 times! Fourty-five minutes later, she was showing signs of being sleepy and getting quite cranky; this wasn't so much fun anymore. I then sat on the floor next to her bed and, very bored, boring and dull-like, put her back in the bed, and ignored any whining. I just pat her gently on the back and occasionally "shhh-shhh"ed her. It took a full hour to get her to sleep; I'm psyched!! I expected it to take much longer.
I'm please to say she slept through the whole night! She didn't fall out of her bed (I'd put a pillow down on the floor just in case) and when she woke up this morning at six o'clock (so ten hours straight sleep; not too bad), she stayed in her bed and just talked happily to herself until I came in to get her.
I'm so proud!
I expect to go through the Rapid Return/bedsitting routine for about a week until the bed loses it's novelty and she figures out it's no big deal (even though it really is!) and going to sleep is nice again. I'm going to treat myself to something new for being a successful Mom.
I'm worried about what'll happen at naptime though....